KUALA LUMPUR – Malaysia saw the value of wholesale and retail trade sales declined 2.7% year-on-year (y-o-y) to RM111.7 billion in January 2021, according to the Department of Statistics Malaysia (DOSM), reported Bernama.
On a month-on-month (m-o-m) basis, chief statistician Datuk Seri Dr Mohd Uzir Mahidin said the wholesale and retail trade sales shrank 3.3% in January 2021 following the implementation of the Movement Control Order (MCO 2.0) in six states beginning January 13.
Commenting on the y-o-y performance, Mohd Uzir said the fall was mainly due to the motor vehicles segment which contracted 13.8% y-o-y to RM10.6 billion.
“Similarly, retail trade fell 2.5% y-o-y to RM45.6 billion, while wholesale trade also eased 0.4% y-o-y to RM55.4 billion,” he said in a statement.
On the retail trade performance, Mohd Uzir said the decrease was due to weaker sales of non-essential products, namely specialised stores (-7.0% y-o-y), household goods (-4.6%) as well as cultural and recreation goods (-5.1%).
“However, retail sales of essential goods posted positive growth, led by non-specialised stores segment which grew 1.4% y-o-y to RM16.6 billion and food, beverages and tobacco segment which rose 6.0% to RM2.9 billion,” he said.
He added that retail trade not in stores, stalls or markets segment expanded 9.0% to RM400 million, while retail sale via stalls and markets segment increased 5.6% to RM100 million.
In terms of the wholesale trade sub-sector, Mohd Uzir said the 0.4% y-o-y fall in January 2021 was mainly due to other specialised wholesale which declined 4.9% y-o-y.
“This was followed by wholesale of agricultural raw materials and live animals (-6.0% y-o-y) and wholesale on a fee or contract basis which contracted 4.7% y-o-y.
However, he pointed out that wholesale of food, beverages and tobacco grew 4.9% y-o-y to RM10.7 billion, while wholesale of household goods rose 4.2% y-o-y to RM11.6 billion.
“Similarly, wholesale of machinery, equipment and supplies also expanded 2.7% y-o-y to RM4.8 billion,” he said.
In terms of sub-sector performance, Mohd Uzir said the motor vehicles segment shed 13.8% y-o-y, weighed down by weaker motor vehicle sales which slid 17.6% y-o-y to RM5.3 billion in January.
“This was followed by the motor vehicles parts and accessories segment which slipped 9.3% y-o-y to RM2.9 billion, while maintenance and repair of motor vehicles segment went down 9.5% y-o-y to RM1.5 billion,” he said.
Mohd Uzir added that during the same period, sales, maintenance and repair of motorcycles also recorded a decline of 11.1% to RM900 million.
On the m-o-m performance of the wholesale and retail trade sales, Mohd Uzir said the 3.3% fall in January 2021 was mainly pulled down by the motor vehicles segment, which slumped 20.5%.
Similarly, he said retail trade also decreased 2.6% m-o-m, but wholesale trade inched up 0.2% m-o-m.
In terms of volume index, Mohd Uzir said wholesale and retail trade dwindled 2.9% y-o-y, pressured by the motor vehicles segment which decreased 13.1%.
“This was followed by retail and wholesale trade which eased 3.2% y-o-y and 0.1% y-o-y, respectively,” he said.
However, he pointed out that the online retail sales index, which portrays e-commerce activity, surged by a record 28.7% y-o-y in January 2021.
As for the seasonally adjusted volume index, Mohd Uzir said it trimmed 2.0% m-o-m, but the seasonally adjusted retail sales index ticked up 0.5% against the previous month.